Things are happening fast in that garden of yours, so let’s get right down to business.
Tip 1: Sharpen Your Tools
Sharpen your pruners more than once a year! Have a flat metal file in your tool bucket and use it often. Position the file at a 45 degree angle to the blade, start at the bottom of the blade where the handles are and draw the file in an upstroke towards the tip. Important: file only in one direction. Repeat until you have a nice, sharp edge. Since that file is out, sharpen your edger, shovel and loppers as well.
Tip 2: Sterilize Your Pots
It’s important to sterilize your pots so you don’t spread a nasty organism that might stunt or kill you new plant, but many people don’t like using bleach (and it’s not good to use on clay pots which can absorb the bleach solution). Here’s an alternative to bleach: wash your pots well in warm soapy water and rinse with 1 cup white vinegar in 2 gallons of water. I buy white vinegar by the gallon, it’s cheaper and I always have it on hand for cleaning.
Tip 3: Edge Your Beds
Spruce up your beds with an edger and mulch — nothing looks better than a bed that’s just been edged and mulched. Edging keeps grass from creeping into your plant beds. The mulch will keep weeds down, retain moisture, and moderate soil temperature reducing plant stress especially in hot weather. Using an organic mulch encourages beneficial soil organisms and worms. And, as the mulch decomposes, it adds organic matter that will improve both the texture and fertility of your soil.